Exactly one year ago today I posted a somewhat controversial rant titled "The Rabid 45" which took aim at the protests and rallies that occured as a result of the No outcome of Scotland's independence referendum last year. I've had a few people approach me asking me whether my views on this have changed since I uploaded that rant and I can safely say they have for the most part, even to the point where I put a big strikeout through the whole rant back in early-mid August.
For those haven't seen the original rant, it's all here.
Several things have happened since then in the UK politically, the Conservative party (Tories) won the general election again (something that I can't say I'm overly happy about) and I can say I am somewhat more sympathetic towards Scotland and I will admit, I have warmed slightly to the SNP although I still strongly oppose their advocation of seceding from the country. Such a move would weaken the UK as a whole and I can see it being devastating for Scotland as well.
I read up on the SNP's manifesto for Scotland's First Minister election on Yahoo and one of the things that's been added is that another indyref is possible. I personally don't feel this is fair as the SNP are almost proposing a neverendum, or referendum after referendum after referendum ad infinitum. I see this as an abuse of democracy so that country leaders can get their way without being called dictators or megalomaniacs.
Scrolling down to the comments I noticed a shitload of anti-English racism from many of the nationalists. Now before I go on with this I'd like to emphasise that I understand that this is certainly not what all SNP supporters are like, I am well aware that the racists I saw in the comments only represent a toxic minority of the party. Sadly they happen to be a rather vocal minority.
The nationalists I've seen on Twitter on the other hand are the complete opposite and don't share the anti-English sentiment that I saw on Yahoo. When David Cameron made a comment about Yorkshire people hating each other, the nationalists stood by Yorkshire's side and supported us. I do not believe the SNP are bad people, as they are willing to work with the UK even if they were to get independence, however like I said I cannot agree with some of their ideologies, like secession from the UK.
There are still a few points that I firmly stand by however, for example I'm still suspicious as to where all of the donations made to that nationalist rally (Hope Over Fear) ended up going. If he pocketed the money then shame on him however I'm not going to accuse anyone or anything, although I still feel we should all know where the money was going to ensure that the nationalists weren't getting scammed or tricked.
I am also still in the belief that any further pro-independence rallies are pointless, kick up an unnecessary storm, and don't solve anything. Yes it's good that you're passionate over something and that you share a common interest but all these rallies are are just anger vented and made vocal. The #CameronMustGo hashtag that was trending before the election was a similar concept, however this was online and caused far less disruption. On top of this, these rallies are only really any good when a referendum is looming (like say, in the month leading up an indyref.) Eventually people will get bored and be like "oh yay another rally whoop-de-doo" and move on with their life. Putting these rallies on whenever you feel like it doesn't solve much as when the indyref comes round, all of the enthusiasm for independence may have faded.
To conclude, I am more sympathetic and my opinion of the SNP has gone up considerably considered this time last year I despised the SNP. Most of my hatred towards them however was blown way out of proportion and was mostly a result of me not understanding the party and it supporter's fully. Likewise, there are still a few points that I put up last year that I stand adamantly by and all-in-all I feel that both sides can learn a few things from the whole scenario.
Also, maybe referring to SNP supporters as "the rabid 45" was over the top and unnecessary, for this I apologise. I won't, however, change the name of the rant so people know what to look for when I refer to that rant.
On a side note, this will likely be my last politically orientated blog post for a while. Politics are one of the subjects I tend to avoid talking about here unless something has really pissed me off and I will admit I'm now having second thoughts over the rabid 45 blog post I posted beforehand.